The Summers by Iva-Marie Palmer follows Kate Sommers who returns to her family’s old beach house years after her mother passed away to prepare for her older sister’s wedding. Back at the Cape, Kate runs into her long-time crush and sister’s old summer boyfriend, Ryan Landry. Now that her sister is getting married, Kate believes it is finally her turn to get noticed.
I purchased this book as a Kindle Daily Deal without knowing anything about this story. From the description, it reminded me a little bit of Jenny Han’s Summer trilogy and Katie Cotugno’s 99 Days which both take place in the summer and feature love triangles. Though those aren’t my favorite YA reads, they were fun books to read over the summer. As a result, I hoped that The Summers would also prove to be a fun summer read that also may feature a love triangle, but featuring two women instead of two mean. Unfortunately, there were a few issues that I encountered in this book that prevented me from connecting with the story.
I think I really struggled to connect with this book because of the characters. Kate is a pretty typical YA character who likes to write and has always been obsessed with the boy next door… and that’s pretty much it. Ryan is cute, muscular, loves to cook… and that’s it. Kate’s older sister, Eliza, is bossy, condescending, rude… and that’s it. Each character fell a little flat for me which made me not really care about their stories.
I also felt like this book really missed the mark on a few aspects, especially the relationships between the sisters. I wished Kate and Eliza’s relationship was a little more fleshed out and that we got to see more of Kate’s relationship with her two younger sisters. Parts of the book that I thought would be more dramatic, like when Kate revealed her relationship with Ryan to Eliza or some sketchy interactions between Ryan and Eliza, were brushed under the rug in favor of reading about Kate stalking Ryan’s ex-girlfriend.
Overall, this book lacked the spark to make the story interesting. I didn’t find myself enjoying this story as I read it. This is presented as a light and quick read, but I struggled to turn the pages. I give this book two out of five stars.